Much of my life, the hour or so before I go to bed has always been an odd duck in my life. Normally, as the script we are all given called “life”, we’re supposed to be tired. And to be sure, eventually my body and brain do decide to shut down. There are evenings where such a thing does go into play before bed time. But that isn’t always the case. How about you?
Perhaps it is just me, and if it is, please just indulge me for a moment. But…and deep down inside, I’m hoping that I’m not alone here with this and am part of some nocturnal fellowship of folks who have a hard time going to bed. Much of my life insomnia was both my enemy and ally (especially when I had to work on a term paper in college). When I was younger, my childhood was spent many days (and weeks) in hospitals, unsettling of such abodes doesn’t portend to a healthy sleeping enviroment. Yet that can only be one act this theater of the nightly struggle of sleep! The rogues gallery included chocolate bars, music, video games, television, soda, late night take out from dodgy restaurants that had that one dish that was out of this world, and of course…coffee. No one to blame for many nights sauntering through the darkness and halls where light emitting from another residency faded in like a ghost through a window.
But I’m not young any longer, now at the age where even my high school friends have kids! Long past my college years, no homework no late night cramming. My stays in hospitals have shortened over the years as insurance companies have lengthened their excuses to not pay. My job doesn’t force me to work “after hours”, though to be honest, I wouldn’t mind. You, though dear reader, may find such a situation to which your struggle for sleep may be excused. But what if you have nothing?
What if you aren’t staying up at night thinking of how you will pay the rent or the gas bill? Though such such thoughts have rented out space in my nocturnal mental state. Sometimes meditation helps, but sometimes, and this will sound crazy, the silence is the loudest thing out there. Silence does indeed have a noise, don’t kid yourself, it sure as hell does! Meditation be damned, it comes either comes in that slow growth, or BLAM! It just appears!
We learn to live with it, don’t we? Much like the other thoughts that come to visit us at night. The mind can be a real son of a bitch, a cruel house mate who instinctively knows who to bring over that would rattle you the most. You’ll find a moment of peace then all of a sudden something horrible pops into your mind and you’ll be like “what the fuck was that all about?!?”
Don’t get me started on that shit. And don’t judge me insane either, you’ve experienced it too, even if you won’t admit it. It comes…then you get disgusted or shocked, then as quickly as it comes it goes. You’re either on another thought or back with our dear friend silence.
Maybe this matters, maybe it doesn’t. But I’m physically disabled, which includes a twisted back that brings forth severe back/spinal pain. To many who suffer from such, it can keep one from sleeping. The pills help, but only up to a certain point. Eventually, somehow, it even succumbs to the body’s need for sleep.
Perhaps many of us our not citizens under the Sun, but indeed creatures of the night. There isn’t much distractions at night save for the television (and looking at you Playstation!). Of course being in front of a computer screen isn’t helping much either, is it? How many of you often find yourself shocked that you’ve been in front of the monitor until 2 AM, eh? It doesn’t have to be your Warcraft or Civilization game, heck, going through web site after web site can collect hours on the meter of time. My father, who will turn 90 this year, often finds himself up into the wee hours just watching Youtube! He too carries odd hours, but at his age he gets a pass.
Nights have seen me just stirring in bed, sometimes my legs just feel like moving. Sometimes it isn’t your legs but your brain cells and you get an epiphany or maybe two. Shit you couldn’t think of or figure out in the day light suddenly becomes clear to you while you’re nestled in bed. And that’s the problem, ain’t it? You either scrambled to find a pencil and paper or your tablet or whatever to write it down or you pray to God or the universe that you don’t forget it. You pick the latter, unless you have some damn good nerves making some damn good memory engrams in your brain, odds are you won’t remember 100% of what you wanted to remember. It becomes a no win situation.
This post has gotten way longer than I thought, holy fuck. My apologies. If you’re still reading this, I hope you do find some peace at night. But if you find yourself struggling to bargain with the Sandman to grant you that ticket to dream land, shit don’t worry you’re not alone here waiting in line.
Night & Peace.